Which of the following describes a type of malware which is difficult to reverse engineer in a virtual lab?
A. Armored virus
B. Polymorphic malware
C. Logic bomb
Correct Answer: A
Section: Threats and Vulnerabilities
An armored virus is a type of virus that has been designed to thwart attempts by analysts from examining its code by using various methods to make tracing, disassembling and reverse engineering more difficult. An Armored Virus may also protect itself from antivirus programs, making it more difficult to trace. To do this, the Armored Virus attempts to trick the antivirus program into believing its location is somewhere other than where it really is on the system.
B: In computer terminology, polymorphic code is code that uses a polymorphic engine to mutate while keeping the original algorithm intact. That is, the code changes itself each time it runs, but the function of the code (its semantics) will not change at all. For example, 1+3 and 6-2 both achieve the same result while using different code. This technique is sometimes used by computer viruses, shellcodes and computer worms to hide their presence. This is not what is described in this question.
C: A logic bomb is a piece of code intentionally inserted into a software system that will set off a malicious function when specified conditions are met. For example, a programmer may hide a piece of code that starts deleting files should they ever be terminated from the company. Software that is inherently malicious, such as viruses and worms, often contain logic bombs that execute a certain payload at a pre-defined time or when some other condition is met. This technique can be used by a virus or worm to gain momentum and spread before being noticed. Some viruses attack their host systems on specific dates, such as Friday the 13th or April Fool’s Day. Trojans that activate on certain dates are often called “time bombs”. A logic bomb is not what is described in this question.
D: A rootkit is a collection of tools (programs) that enable administrator-level access to a computer or computer network. Typically, a cracker installs a rootkit on a computer after first obtaining user-level access, either by exploiting a known vulnerability or cracking a password. Once the rootkit is installed, it allows the attacker to mask intrusion and gain root or privileged access to the computer and, possibly, other machines on the network. A rootkit may consist of spyware and other programs that: monitor traffic and keystrokes; create a “backdoor” into the system for the hacker’s use; alter log files; attack other machines on the network; and alter existing system tools to escape detection. A rootkit is not what is described in this question.